A group of around 100 pro-Beijing protesters joined a march in Yuen Long on Sunday, accusing pro-democracy lawmaker Lam Cheuk-ting of causing last July’s mob attack in the district. Lam has, in turn, accused the group of smearing him.

Last July 21, a stick-wielding mob dressed in white shirts indiscriminately attacked protesters, journalists and civilians at Yuen Long’s MTR station, leaving many injured. Protesters accused the police of colluding with the mob as officers were seen leaving the scene of the incident. Reinforcements only arrived 39 minutes later, as criticism mounted over footage of a commander chatting with the men who appeared to be involved.

Before Lam appeared in Yuen Long on July 21, the mob had already begun assaulting people in the area. The democrat was among those injured by the mob.

“Without Lam Cheuk-ting bringing protesters into [Yuen Long], the July 21 incident would not have happened,” a spokesperson for the demonstration claimed.

The group marched from the Yuen Long MTR station at around 2:30pm and arrived at Yuen Long police station an hour later. They left after handing a letter to the police.

During the event, a Ming Pao reporter was surrounded by protesters and was pushed and kicked. The newspaper condemned the incident and urged all sides to respect press freedom.

Lam said in response that the protest twisted facts in a planned and organised way: “Telling a lie a hundred times will not make it the truth,” he said in a statement.

He said the police asked him to provide clips and statements as a witness to the incident, and invited him to help identify suspects: “This clearly proves that I am a victim and not the culprit,” he said.

Lam Cheuk-ting. File Photo: LegCo.

Police Public Relations Branch Senior Superintendent Kong Wing-cheung claimed in an interview with i-Cable TV at the end of last year that the July 21 incident occurred because “a group of people led a group of protesters into Yuen Long.”

Lam said he demanded the police retract Kong’s remarks and apologise to the public.

He said he will cite the Legislative Council (Powers and Privileges) Ordinance this week at the legislature to demand an investigation into the July 21 incident. He will also file a civil suit against the police commissioner, accusing him of negligence.

Kris Cheng

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.